Joy is an inside job.
The process for creating joy is internally controlled an internally derived. It doesn’t depend on anything but your attention and practice.
What follows is a template for creating joy. Enjoy and may it serve you.
Optimize Your Health
Being healthy make joy easier. Eat real food, don’t eat too much, don’t drink things made from chemicals, be physical every day, sleep enough and well, be moderate about your habits, be aware of your senses and be OK with enjoying them, breath.
Nourish Your Mind
Read, wonder, learn new things, take your knowledge of something you already know deeper, learn a language, learn to dance, learn to juggle… Ask questions about everything; fill your mind with the wonder of the world like a child does.
Be present, be conscious, focus on the present moment. Don’t miss it! You don’t get it back.
Determine Your Values
What is important to you? Really important? What do you value? Love, security, accomplishment, learning, challenge, excitement? Distill down to your core values – 4 or 5.
Then write down the criteria – the measure for each of these things being fulfilled (validation rule) for each of your values. This will help you achieve a life congruent to your values.
You are congruent when you act in a way that’s in agreement with your values. When you act congruent to your values and exercise the discipline to do it over time you tend to start getting what you want.
Be OK With Imperfection
Perfection is an abstraction – it isn’t real. Life isn’t perfect and that is an essential part of its’ beauty. Don’t waste your life on what you can’t control. Focus on what you can control – your thoughts, speech, and actions.
Determine Your Talents
What are you really good at? What do you really love to do? These are your talents. Using your talents will give you joy.
Have Your Work Be Who You Are
Work things out – even if it is a long path to get there – so that your work takes advantage of your talents and allows you to be congruent to your values. Keep in mind that you don’t have to be in your dream job to exercise your talents and your values!
Make a Difference
Have a mission and have it include constantly asking, “Is there something I can do and say right here and right now that would serve that person in front of me?” You’re most important when you serve someone else!